No matter how many times I send them to Dustin, Dawn, Taylor, or Robin. No matter if it’s a first or final draft. I always think my latest draft is perfect. This draft is a best seller. I justify my overactive pride with the fact I’ve been writing for a hobby since 2006. My skills have improved immensely. I’ve finally figured out this writing thing. Then a friend returns the draft with more red text than black.
I crash back to earth a few days later. I read their comments first. Try to take in everything without getting upset. Some feedback is in areas I knew needed to be fixed. Most are changes I never noticed. Ones that totally enhance the story. Or edits which keep me from writing like one of my third graders.
What I’m trying to say is thank you to my friends who edit my drafts. Without you, VERVE STONES, NINTH NIGHT, UNDER, and BACK OF BEYOND would never exist!
Plugging away on BACK OF BEYOND. To be honest, I’m feeling frustrated. It’s been almost three years since I self-published VERVE STONES. I wrote over half of BACK OF BEYOND years before that date. I desperately want to finish. My students, friends, and family keep asking me if I’m finished yet. I can see the end of the draft even if not far, far off.
Self-publishing takes me a very long time. Especially because my AMAZING FRIENDS have to take time out their own busy lives to edit my work. My manuscripts always require a great of improvements. Staring at the incredible cover by Jake doesn’t help either.
I daydream about being an author full time. Writing for hours each day instead of minutes. Having editors to burden with my drafts instead of friends. Being able to finish several other picture books, stories, and series I started and never have time to write. My job, friends, family, and God come before writing. I will keep praying this can be my job instead.
Time to get back to work.
With a five day break from school, I’ve found myself with some writing time. I’m officially halfway through implementing Robin Puelma’s feedback and edits she gave me for BACK OF BEYOND. I know I mentioned this before, but her comments for me to cut my overly described characters, settings, and fight scenes have vastly improved the flow and pacing of the story.
Even more important is her critique that my first draft needed a dilemma for Spoon. Of course, Robin is completely correct. Spoon achieved a goal. Yet, he lacked a solid dilemma. Well, I’m pleased to say the story is so much better now that Spoon is trying to work through a dilemma. SO MUCH BETTER! Can’t wait to finish the second draft to see how Spoon changes at the end of the story.
A few of my third graders are reading VERVE STONES. They’re asking questions, updating me on what they’re reading, and the ones that finished want to know when THE LEGEND OF SPOON – BOOK 2 is available. My students’ love for Altrea, verses stones, and the characters are without a doubt my favorite part of being an author. I might not sell many books, but these interactions are priceless.
Here’s to putting in some hours on BACK OF BEYOND over the holiday weekend!
Excited to see someone read VERVE STONES on Kindle Unlimited! I’m working to finish BACK OF BEYOND (THE LEGEND OF SPOON – BOOK 2). My family recently moved to Olympia and are staying with friends while we search for a house in the same neighborhood. I haven’t found much time to write with the move, starting my 13th year of teaching, and my daughter in kindergarten. The new reader and unbelievable cover for VERVE STONES mostly done from Jake at J Caleb Design are a huge motivations for me to get my nose to the grindstone.
I’m part way through Robin Puelma’s edits for my first draft and BACK OF BEYOND! I can’t thank you enough for reading over my story. This manuscript will be so much better because of your hard work. It’s nice to have someone call me out on my overactive deceptions and drawn out fight scenes. Thanks for making me a better writer, too!
Fun to remember this comment left on my blog almost two years ago!!! This comment alone has allowed me to stay motivated on finishing THE LEGEND OF SPOON, BOOK 2: BACK OF BEYOND! From Brady on May 30, 2015.